|Piers Lane. Photo: (c) Keith Saunders|
It's a fine and respected event in one of the contest world's most gorgeous cities, inaugurated in 1977 by its founder Claire Dan, founder of the Cladan Cultural Exchange Institute. The finals take place in the concert hall of the Sydney Opera House.
Lane won the prize for Best Australian Pianist at its inaugural competition and was on the jury in 2004; besides being an ever-popular presence on the concert platform he is artistic director of the Australian Festival of Chamber Music in Townsville and has spearheaded in London the annual Myra Hess Day at the National Gallery.
He is a sought-after adjudicator, a tireless treasure-trove raider in the rare repertoire department, and a recording artist whose discs for Hyperion are a constant delight. He's also a thoroughly lovely bloke and a man of integrity. The world of music competitions needs such people.
Maybe Leeds has missed a trick by letting him slip through the net to the other side of the world.
Update - here's an interview Piers gave to the ABC re his appointment.